The Oklahoma City Thunder are pressed to add more key players after Kevin Durant left for the Golden State Warriors. Several names have cropped up on recent NBA trade rumors, including Chicago Bulls superstar Jimmy Butler.
The Thunder still have Russell Westbrook and will have him for the next several years. They also have Victor Oladipo and Steven Adams, but there is a gaping hole on the wings after Durant’s departure.
According to FanSided’s Thunderous Intentions, the Thunder should target Butler from the Bulls. Butler has been mentioned in numerous NBA trade rumors this summer. While the rumors have slowed down in recent weeks, there is still a strong chance Butler will change zip code before the trade deadline in February.
If the Bulls continue to struggle and decide to part ways with Butler, Oklahoma City is tipped as a potential landing spot. Tony Heim of Thunderous Intentions said that Butler will be a good fit for the Thunder.
However, there could be a potential problem as well. Butler also likes the ball in his hands for the majority of the game, similar to Westbrook. It is well-documented that Butler had difficulties adjusting to former teammate Derrick Rose, who is also a ball-dominant guard.
“The only problem with this fit is that Butler also likes the ball in his hands-the same problem that seemed to cause the KD-Russ split,” Heim noted. “We’ve seen the problems he’s had with Derrick Rose in Chicago, but Rose doesn’t produce like Westbrook.”
But while there could be problems on the offensive end of the floor, Butler’s value on defense will be immeasurable. The hard-nosed guard will wreak havoc for opposing teams on defense alongside newly-acquired Victor Oladipo.
It remains to be seen whether or not the Bulls will eventually move Butler. Earlier in the offseason, Butler said that he is not worried of the NBA trade rumors but added that he is ready for any eventuality.
“I’m a big boy. I don’t need you to tell me, ‘No, you’re not going to be traded.’ I know it’s a business and if it happens it happens, but I’m here,” Butler told Chicago Sun-Times, referring to the talks stirred by NBA trade rumors.